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Airfares to Cairo decrease amid winter travel rush in MENA region

The average cost of the Kuwait to Cairo route has decreased by 62% when compared to the pre-pandemic average

The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region has seen a jump in airfares due to the increase in winter travel in the run-up to Christmas. According to online travel marketplace Wego, international ticket reservations have increased by 11.37% year over year through January 2024.

However, data has also shown that, in contrast to 2022, average flight prices on several traditionally popular routes have decreased this winter. Cairo has seen the largest decline in fares, which has led to an increase in bookings. This could be attributed to geopolitical tensions in the region following the start of the Israel-Gaza war.

Data indicates that some of the biggest price reductions, with average savings of up to 35% when compared to the winter season of 2022-23, have been observed on flights to Cairo from several Gulf nations. Some routes have seen prices return to pre-pandemic levels; for example, the average cost of a ticket from Riyadh to Cairo in 2023 was 112.81% less than it was during the winter at the end of 2019.

Wego’s research indicated that Cairo has become the most popular destination among budget-conscious MENA residents, with Jeddah, Dubai, Istanbul, and Kuwait following closely behind due to a significant decrease in airfare.

The average cost of the Kuwait to Cairo route has decreased by 62% when compared to the pre-pandemic average.

Bookings that had been capped at 10% were cancelled because of the unrest, the Egyptian minister of tourism revealed to Reuters in November 2023. Egypt’s tourist industry was expected to bring in over USD 13 billion this year and reach a target of 15 million visitors before the Gaza conflict broke out in October.

Major South and Southeast Asian cities are also among the top 10 travel destinations this season, including Manila, Lahore, and Delhi. The region’s Filipino, Indian, and Pakistani residents may use these travel places as homecoming excursions.

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